“I fundamentally believe YOU know how to spend your money better than the government.”

Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch: ‘Axe the tax’ to leave more money in Hoosier pockets

ORIGINAL ARTICLE FROM: Indiana Business Journal

By Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch
March 8, 2024

Featured Issue: What does the state need to do to boost Indiana’s per capita income, which continues to lag the nation’s?

Boosting Indiana’s per capita income requires bold, visionary leadership. The character of leadership that focuses less on the next fiscal quarter and more on the next quarter of a century.

Leadership involves taking risks. Calculated risks that result in a higher quality of life for Hoosiers.

As governor, I will implement daring initiatives that will attract more talent, jobs, companies, investment and visitors to our beautiful state.

As I travel throughout Indiana, one thing is clear: Hoosiers are being hurt by the high cost of Bidenomics.

The statistics tell the story: The average American needs an extra $11,400 more today than they did three years ago just to meet basic needs.

In 2021, the total cost of a 30-year, $400,000 home loan was $604,000; in 2023, with Bidenflation, this same home loan costs $1,027,000.

So, what is the best way to put more money back in your pockets? I am the only candidate for governor who has a plan to do just this: It’s called “Axe the Tax.”

Under my initiative, I will work with the leaders of the General Assembly to gradually eliminate Indiana’s individual income tax. If implemented, “Axe the Tax” will leave an extra $2,000 in the average Hoosier’s pocket.

Recently, USA Today compiled a list of the average salaries by state. The study revealed Indiana falls $2,000 below the national mean.

We can do better. We must foster and nurture an entrepreneurial environment in our state that benefits businesses, workers and innovators—because that’s exactly what other states are doing.

Companies and talent are moving to states like Florida, Tennessee and Texas that have no state income tax. We need those businesses to invest here, in Hoosiers.

We should strive to reduce the costs of doing business in Indiana; this includes reducing burdensome fees, modernizing state government and lowering our overall tax burden.

We also must energize our diverse entrepreneurs—empowering women, minorities, Hoosiers with disabilities and veterans (and other small businesses) will help us not to lose sight that half of the jobs in our state come from small to midsize businesses.

Another critical aspect of growing our economy and raising our per capita income is an issue I’ve made a hallmark of my public service career: addressing mental health and addiction struggles.

According to Gallup, 19% of American workers rate their mental health as “fair or poor,” and their rate of unplanned absences is four times more than that of their counterparts who report “good, very good or excellent” mental health.

As governor, I will always be there for the most vulnerable. For our economy to reach its maximum potential, we must have a happy, healthy workforce.

Indiana’s economy should be stable, but it should never stand still.

When it comes to eliminating the individual income tax, attracting talent and investment, creating jobs, cultivating an entrepreneurial spirit, and providing strategic leadership, a governor must be bold while also bringing people together.

We haven’t come this far just to come this far.•

Crouch, a Republican, is Indiana’s 52nd lieutenant governor. She also served as Indiana’s state auditor from 2014 to 2017 and was a member of the Indiana House
of Representatives. Send comments on this column to ibjedit@ibj.com.


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